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Sunday, June 26, 2016

Some Answers to Readers' Questions

Over these several past years, I've tried my best to help you all out with your photography and camera questions, either indirectly by publishing articles and spreading the knowledge, or even directly, by communicating with you. Through your comments here on the Amateur Nikon website, on Twitter, or through private messages on Facebook, I have attempted to facilitate the process of purchasing a new camera, choosing a new lens, or realizing the specific needs of a given photographic situation.

I thank you all for this communication, which I hope will continue. I don't have all the answers (and when I do offer an answer, I don't claim to have the best one - let alone the sole one) but I promise you it will always be an honest one, that is, I will say things as I believe them.

For today, I picked a few questions I was asked over the last few months, and published the answers I gave, for everyone's benefit.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

How to Take Great Pictures in Tourist-Infested Areas

I'm back from yet another trip, which this time took me to Santorini, Greece (among other places). I'm sure many of you know that Santorini is a very popular destination for tourists of all kinds - and particularly popular for weddings, hence there is a photographic element here.

But today I won't be talking about wedding pictures in Santorini. Rather, using Santorini as an example, we will talk about tackling a very annoying issue that I'm sure many of you have faced: How to take inspiring, original pictures in areas full of tourists.

Picture this: You have finally arrived at your dream destination (having spent a substantial amount of money to get there). You're eager to go out there and take photos of the wonderful landscape (or monuments). Only, as you discover, there are tourists everywhere! It's one of those "expectations vs reality" things. It all looks so great on the Internet or books, how on earth do those photographers manage it?

Today I'll share with you some of my secrets - based on my experience both as a photographer and as a world traveler - that can allow you to take great pics in such locations. As they say, a photo is worth a thousand words, so I'll try to show you how to take pictures like this:

Everybody... everybody... everybody wants to be a cat!

instead of this:

Great, another bunch of asses.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Reviewing the Soligor 200mm f/2.8 Lens

Once again, I will be away for a while. AmateurNikon will be back with new articles around June 20th. Meanwhile, feel free to take a look at the countless other articles - you're sure to find something that interests you! Thanks :)


Ah, there's another of those oldies (but goldies? we'll see...) for today's review. Soligor was a pretty well-known third-party alternative back in the days, and you can find such lenses (used, needless to say) at very competitive prices. Make sure about mount compatibility before you buy one (most come in M42 or T2 mounts, but some - like the 200mm f/2.8 - are also made directly for Nikon and other mounts). A 200mm f/2.8 prime lens sounds like an awesome deal, right? Well, let's take a look...


+ its construction is very, very solid. No complaints at all.
+ manual focus is perfect, as expected for a manual focus lens
+ 200mm and f/2.8 is not something you find every day (at such low prices)...

At f/2.8 the resolution and contrast aren't really what one expects from a prime, but they are not unusable.